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Saturday, April 30th, 2005

GUYS AND DOLLS

This weekend I wound up house sitting and dog sitting for my friend Jeff who was out of town on vacation.  Jeff has an AMAZING collection of DVDs, cable and TiVo, so sufficed to say I didn’t leave the couch the entire weekend.  Hell, I didn’t even inconvenience myself to leave the house for food.  I just got the phone book and ordered everything in.  Fortunately Turner Classic Movies was running a series of musicals and I finally saw GUYS AND DOLLS, which amazingly I had never seen before.  I loved it!  Before the film Robert Osbourne said that Frank Sinatra was unhappy with the film and felt that HE should have played the role of “Sky Masterson” instead of Marlon Brando.  With all due respect to Mr. Sinatra (and believe me there’s plenty) I think he was far better suited for his role as “Nathan Detroit.”  The casting was exactly as it should have been.

Since “Sky Masterson” has to seduce a prim uptight missionary into running off with him to Havana, the role calls for every bit of sex appeal that one actor can muster.  That’s why Brando fits the bill.  The woman is such a cold and harsh person that it must take a man of supreme charms to melt her heart and win her favor.  It is a tough task and “Sky” proves he is more than up to the challenge.  Meanwhile, “Nathan Detroit” is caught in the middle of trying to set up the city’s largest floating crap game AND to keep his neglected fiance “Miss Adelaide” from finding out about it.  We find out that “Nathan” has been engaged to her for about 13 years or so!  Naturally she is frustrated and eager for him to finally marry her.

The film features excellent musical numbers such as “Luck Be A Lady,” “Sit Down You’re Rockin’ The Boat” and “Take Back Your Mink.”

Plot complications ensue and the characters finally get their happy ending in the form of a double wedding.  The film is colorful, fun and entertaining.  It was directed by the great Joseph L. Mankiewicz and it wound up being the only musical he ever made.  If you are looking for a classic grand scale Hollywood musical, this is it hands down!

Written by Karie (site owner) on 04/30 at 02:07 AM

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